I'm no industry analyst, and I'm certainly not one to fall in love with just any mainstream metal that I hear on the airwaves. However, the first time I heard "Chop Suey!" on Chicago's Q101, I got curious, thinking, "Wait a minute here... this isn't 'Sugar,' nor is it 'Spiders' (FYI: both singles from SOAD's first release).. it's better!" This album is a far more matured and refined effort, and it's apparent to anyone that heard the first album that SOAD definately had not run out of creative energy, and even more apparent that they avoided the dreaded "sophomore jinx" by a longshot! Serj's vocals are once again the most uncanny you've ever heard, as he hits every type of mood in the Rock/Metal spectrum, sometimes all in one song! (See "Toxicity", "ATWA", and yes, if you really listen, "Chop Suey!") SOAD hits on the ever so popular and controversial topic of cocaine-addict groupie hoes in "Psycho," and the government drug conspiracies in "Prison Song." "Shimmy" strikes as a kooky, not-so-well mannered imitation of 1/2 of System's first release. All things considered, this album is definately the same System that caught our attention in 1998. The only difference from this release and their self-titled release can only be summed up like this: they're worlds apart, yet 100% System.